Wednesday 12 May 2021

Falling Between Two Treaties: A Reply To Dr Emily Beausoleil.

Bringing The Past Into The Present: For the proposed solutions of those promoting a Tiriti-based constitution of Aotearoa to work, the whole history of New Zealand subsequent to the signing of the Treaty must be set to one side, and New Zealanders living in 2021 must proceed as if they are living in 1840. This is necessary because in no other way can the terms employed to translate the English of the Treaty into the Maori of te Tiriti be infused with real constitutional significance. 

THE “CONVERSATION” demanded on the meaning of the Treaty of Waitangi is likely to be short. Not because there is no need for a national debate on how Maori and Pakeha should live together in the twenty-first century, but because the current defenders of te Tiriti (as it is now advisable to call the Maori translation of Captain Hobson’s document) will be unable to present a convincing defence of their ahistorical interpretation of its undertakings.

The reason for this incapacity is a simple one. To make their proposed solutions work, the whole history of New Zealand subsequent to the signing of the Treaty must be set to one side, and New Zealanders living in 2021 must proceed as if they are living in 1840. This is necessary because in no other way can the terms employed to translate the English of the Treaty into the Maori of te Tiriti be infused with real constitutional significance. What the promoters of a Tiriti-based constitution of Aotearoa are saying, in effect, is that everything which New Zealanders came to understand about their state must be cast aside, and that we must all begin again.

Is it reasonable to ask the five million human-beings inhabiting these islands in 2021 to agree to such a proposition? Dr Emily Beausoleil, senior lecturer in Political Science at Victoria University, writing for Newsroom, insists that it is.

Working from the strongly contested conclusion of the Waitangi Tribunal that “the rangatira who signed te Tiriti o Waitangi in February 1840 did not cede sovereignty to the British Crown”, Dr Beausoleil dismisses dissenters’ objections as “misconceptions” born out of “conflicting translations” and “the greater airtime the English version has had in our schools, media and government.” She does, however, acknowledge that the Tribunal’s 2014 rangatiratanga bombshell “also raises serious questions without any easy answers about what fulfilling these Articles [of te Tiriti] would require of us as a society today.”

Well, yes, it most certainly does.

Serious questions about the Treaty’s meaning have been raised before in New Zealand history. The most serious were arguably those raised by the leaders of the new settler state established by the New Zealand Constitution Act of 1852, whose first Parliament met in Auckland in 1854. A strong argument can be mounted that the Foreign and Colonial Office, in persuading the British parliament to grant its New Zealand colony a large measure of self-government, was effectively affirming the cynical view of the Treaty enunciated by one of the Governors of the land-grabbing New Zealand Company:

“We have always had very serious doubts whether the Treaty of Waitangi, made with naked savages by a consul invested with no plenipotentiary powers, without ratification by the Crown, could be treated by lawyers as anything but a praiseworthy device for amusing and pacifying savages for the moment.”

There is a logic to the Treaty, however, which is present in both the English and the Maori versions. A logic which asserted itself more and more forcefully as the settler government of New Zealand became ever more firmly established, and the number of Pakeha arriving in the country grew by leaps and bounds. The guarantees contained in Article 2 of the Treaty: that only the Crown could purchase Maori land; and that any decision to sell land had to conform with the tikanga (customs and practices) of chieftainship; were simply incompatible with the settler government’s vision of New Zealand’s future. The Maori King Movement, by refusing to sell any more land to the Crown, exposed the logic of the Treaty in a way that made a decisive settler response inevitable.

It came in 1863, when the settler government, aided by 12,000 imperial British troops, militarily overwhelmed the Maori Kingdom of the Waikato. Article 1, which, in the only version of the Treaty the settler government recognised, granted the Crown full and undivided sovereignty, was deemed to trump Article 2. This amounted to what the distinguished New Zealand legal scholar, Professor Jock Brookfield, described as a “revolutionary seizure of power”.

It was a revolution which resulted in the Treaty of Waitangi being dismissed as “a simple nullity”, and which led to the ruthless suppression of all Maori resistance to Pakeha rule. Built upon the expropriated resources of the autonomous Maori communities which preceded it, the New Zealand State has, with the passing of time, won both the de facto and the de jure right to dispose of these islands as it sees fit.

Dr Beausoleil’s arguments in favour of implementing the “Tiriti-led” recommendations of the controversial He Puapua Report would be a lot more convincing if she simply acknowledged that, for the logic of the Treaty to be successfully reasserted, then a similar “revolutionary seizure of power” will be necessary.

Significantly, the word “revolution” does not appear in Dr Beausoleil’s Newsroom post. The transition to a Tiriti-based constitution is, instead, to be accomplished by education and persuasion. In her words:

“When we understand these commitments, objections that He Puapua is divisive and undemocratic […] begin to ring hollow. Changing our institutions to more fully realise the unceded authority of tangata whenua would not only fulfil our Tiriti and United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples obligations and thereby make our power arrangements more legitimate – it would also mean greater self-determination, equality and meaningful voice among Tiriti partners.”

That’s a nice vision of the future, but, as someone who lectures in Political Science ought to know, the efficacy of education and persuasion in the state’s application of political, economic, social and cultural power is – to put it mildly – limited. Such a host of interests; such an array of prejudices; such a collection of legal and constitutional objections stand in the way of securing majority consent for even a tenth of He Puapua’s recommendations that the chances of bringing any of them into force by democratic means are vanishingly small.

More to the point, if a majority of New Zealanders come to believe that their government is attempting to bring about a revolutionary change in New Zealand’s constitutional arrangements by stealth, then the opportunity for any of us – Maori or Pakeha – to participate in the creation of Dr Beausoleil’s “more just, more honourable, more inclusive Aotearoa” will disappear entirely.

When Britain’s soldiers, having executed the “revolutionary seizure of power” demanded of them by the settler government, departed, did they leave behind them a more just, more honourable and more inclusive New Zealand? Or, did they bid farewell to a state which, having secured these islands by force of arms, would surrender them to nothing else?

This essay was originally posted on The Daily Blog of Tuesday, 11 May 2021.


Anonymous said...

The situation is much graver than many realise.

The money behind the UN program is expected to make good returns. In order to ensure this, those interests have been funding media, civil society, political groups, leadership networks, and other forms of organisation and lobbying. The people who receive that funding are sent abroad to training camps in Australia and elsewhere. Their cut outs come to dominate conversations about whole industries and the relations between the people who live here. Much of what and who they fund are intensely decisive in their rhetoric. In fact, most leaders who recruited from radical Maoist and Stalinist groups like Socialist Aotearoa.

We should look askance at that foreign funding, and ask why so much of it is geared towards supporting land claims that go beyond the Treaty of Waitangi, and the undermining of the New Zealand Police. We should note, very carefully, whether any of those funders have been involved in string up colour revolutions abroad.

greywarbler said...

How can it be that professionals in NZ or other universities should attempt to overturn our understandings of how we want to proceed, just through their own contrary beliefs and their own pomposity of their standing within their own discipline? It might give them personal publicity but doesn't help towards the country making reasoned, principled and practical decisions that the parties involved can agree with.

Maori have been saying for some time that the Treaty of Waitangi is a living document, and can be interpreted to allow for movement to meet modern needs. Mainly it gives them a place to stand when it comes to arguments with pakeha, and on that approach it would be backward moving for some Maori to say otherwise.

Keep out of our discussion you professional argufiers and purveyors of propriety, and in this case it seems, nitpickers. The Treaty is important just as the Bible is central to our civilisation. Both have words and dogma in them that need to be examined for intention, not to be applied literally to new bruises.

Shane McDowall said...

If anyone has documents from the 1830s proving that the British Crown intended to enter into a "partnership" with Maori, please share them with us.

The idea of partnership is a legal fiction created in the 1980s.

From the English "translations" of the treaty, it is obvious that the British were seeking imperium (the right to rule), while explicitly excluding dominium (ownership), in exchange for Maori being granted all the rights and privileges of British subjects.

Exactly what rights and privileges British subjects had in 1840 would make a good topic for a PhD.

Interesting to note that when the British reluctantly took over Fiji the Treaty of Waitangi was held up as an example of what not to do. In particular, do NOT offer the natives any rights or privileges.

Advocates for Maori sovereignty need look no further than Tonga to see what a mess indigenous sovereignty looks like in practice in Polynesia. A Mickey Mouse monarchy running a corrupt Third World country.

Maori are more likely do drown than non-Maori. Perhaps we should have separate Maori oceans, lakes and rivers. Maori are more likely to die in road accidents. Clearly we need separate Maori roads.

Those Maori who want Maori solutions to Maori problems should think of a way to pay for these Maori solutions.

The real beneficiaries of separate Maori institutions will be the small but growing Maori middle class that feasts off the bloated corpse of the Maori underclass.

Nick J said...

Well paid and padded foreign academics are living in our ivory towers, telling us what to do, at our expense. And in every possible way that makes no sense.

I spent Sunday lunchtime overhearing conversations in the Taumaranui RSA. Common people, all ethnicities, old young, family groups celebrating Mothers Day. People often written off by the urban intelligentsia as dull rustic hicks. The good Canook academic needs to get there amongst them asap to discover the common sense that she lacks and they have in bucket loads. Common Kiwis aren't stupid, they can see through this nonsense and will respond accordingly.

greywarbler said...

I never see anything useful to knowledge in your comments Shane McDowall. And you have quite a lot to say in them. Basically they are saying 'I can't be bothered thinking about anything else but my wants, my connections, so go away with your wants. Not of any value for getting good outcomes for all.

Odysseus said...

I see Ms Beausoleil is a Canadian "political theorist" who teaches at Victoria University or Te Herenga Waka as it is now also known. I pity her students if they are paying good money for her lectures. While it might be possible for Canadian "First Nations" living in remote regions of that vast continental country, or even Quebecois, to exercise a degree of self determination and go their separate ways it is impossible in a small country like New Zealand where Maori and other New Zealanders have intermarried and intermingled for some two centuries. Nor would most people consider it at all desirable. We generally like and respect each other.

It is amusing that the Waitangi Tribunal against all the evidence has ruled that "rangatira" did not cede sovereignty. Did it not occur to the Tribunal that if this was indeed the case, then they had no authority to make such a ruling, the Tribunal having been established by an illegal Act of Parliament?

Whatever the wrongs of the past we are now confronted by a radical Maori sovereignty movement which seems to have considerable clout with Ardern and her government. I recall on her first outing as PM to Waitangi she was asked by a television reporter to describe the three Articles of the Treaty. This she could not even begin to do until an adviser nearby whispered audibly "partnership", which of course was incorrect. I'm not sure she has yet caught up on what should be considered essential background reading for any New Zealand Prime Minister.

The Barron said...

It is interesting that in Scotland a similar argument exists as to whether sovereignty is maintained as the right of those that freely entered into agreement. Both Maori and the Scots have the view that as unconquered people, sovereignty has not been conceded, and the right to determine the degree of independence remains.

Chris seems to be suggesting that nga hapu Maori are subjects of conquest, not legal agreement. Few would accept this historically or legally. It certainly denies NZ a blue-print for the future. In doing so, it is a sadly parallel argument to that of Boris Johnson, in which he seems to assert subjugation of the Scots but cannot explain how self-determination was ceded.

The starting point for anyone interested in equity should be that a “revolutionary seizure of power” happened to NZ in the mid-80s and 90s. Maori were disproportionally victims of this, but there is little doubt that other working and middle class New Zealanders found themselves and the State excluded from resources previously available. The Treaty gives Maori a viable legal and cultural challenge to this isolation from equity. Rather than continue to blame other victims of the “revolutionary seizure of power”, I support their struggle. I wish the left could mobilize the plight of all those left inequitable in society. Divide and conquer has the Scrooge McDucks rolling in their money vaults laughing.

Christine Pullar said...

Two questions:

1 Many treaties are translated into multiple languages. There must be international law setting out the presumption that each translation of a legal document has the same meaning and also mechanisms to handle difference of interpretation. What is the relevant international law?

2 How would that international law apply to the Treaty of Waitangi?

John Hurley said...

This period will make reputations.
I read that it is Soviet dissidents who are read today not the other lot.

How very becoming

sumsuch said...

Havna read beyond your first and last para. But did do a Stuff general knowledge quiz today. What percent of the North Island did Maori own in 1860 and what percent in c.2000? 80 % and 4 %.

If the least were the Left's immediate priority, as it should be, there wouldn't be this separatist reaction. A social democrat whose heart isn't in the needy is not.

Not agin you, who has sacrificed money for that point lifelong.

Guerilla Surgeon said...

You know what, I honestly can't be bothered commenting on this topic given the traditional trotting out of tired anti-Maori stereotypes. At least we're not into the "capacity for mindless violence" stage quite yet. Yet here I am. But funnily enough I can't find anything to say that grey and the Barron have not said – fight the good fight guys.

David George said...

The opportunity for an honest and meaningful discussion appears to have already disappeared.

Apart from Waititi's unedifying tantrum yesterday and his assertion that discussion, or dissent from He Puapua, even in parliament, was "racist", we had the PM making the claim that the reason for moving ahead was "because it's 2021".
It's difficult to see any genuine discussion, never mind any sort of consensus, with such bone headed, childish participants in positions of power and, to a large extent, in control of the narrative.

Beausoleil: "Changing our institutions to more fully realise the unceded authority of tangata whenua"

Regardless of the text of the treaty with regard to sovereignty, and recent attempts at untangling intent and understanding after all these years, surely the salient question is: what did the people believe at the time? We can figure out what they believed by how they acted. They certainly acted as if overall authority was conceded to Britain with the rights and obligations that entailed.

How can it be said that a de facto acceptance for 180 years is, essentially, meaningless; that the whole thing was founded on a misunderstanding? The foolish idea of partnership through separatism had no merit then and even less now.

Nick J said...

In jest but with some historical backing it is possible to claim that the English sovereigns have not been English since 1066. They have had Norman (French), Welsh, Scot and German. Thats a millennium under foreign rule.

With Scottish independence it needs to be remembered that the Union was not forced by either party, both sides had many in favour and opposition. I suspect from talking to my English contacts that they would quite happily free themselves of the Scots, but only if they can guarantee that the devils fire water continues to flow from north to south.

Simon Cohen said...

Interesting to read Greywarblers comment about Shane McDowall. At least McDowall puts his names to his comments and doesn't hide behind a nom de plume.

Jasper said...

Maybe a 'New' Treaty is needed? Starting with the creation of a "New Republic?" With a new constitution, in writing?

Andrew Nichols said...

International law has long been that it is the indigenous interpretation of a treaty which carries most weight. Given this, we need to recognise this in the Treaty. For all you sad sacks thinking it will mean Maori run the whole show, relax. Just look at the Treaty settlements. Despite being conclusively shown they deserve far more than they are awarded Maori have been very generous. Look at the recent deays where Pukaha Mt Bruce was immediately gifted back to the nation and public ownership by the hapu awarded it. Chris. I've admired your contributions to public debate ever since I haerd you speak at that launch of Jim Andertons NLP in Sydenham so long ago but here you descend to the Winston Peters standard of alarmist nonsense. Maori wont be taking over the nation. It's sound research findings that show giving Maori substantial control over matters that concern them such as health delivery will benefit us all. Just chill man.

Shane McDowall said...

Greywarbler. Can't say I have gained any useful information from your comments. Admittedly I rarely read them because they are usually the kind of long winded waffle I have come to expect from elderly folk with too much time on their hands.

You should take up bowls.

And, by the way, are you able to produce any documentary evidence from the 1830s that the British Crown intended to enter into a "partnership" with Maori?

Not going to hold my breath.

You do not know me, you do not know what I think, and you have no idea what my connections are.

But at least for over 40 years I have provided a genuine Maori voice - unfortunately for free - to the Pakeha dominated media using my real name.

People who comment in public forums using a pseudonym are moral cowards.

Kat said...

The problem is that there are two versions of the Treaty, English and Maori with the majority of signatories on the Maori version being Maori and vice versa with the English version. The contentious wording is around Sovereignty or Rangatiratanga which Maori say they never agreed to, but is in the English version. Governance is different to giving up absolute control and that is written as Kawanatanga in the Maori version.

Trust is a basic need for a successful partnership. Partnerships are made up of people who view each other as necessary equals and show mutual respect for each other's differences. A successful partnership looks for ways to focus on solutions, not just problems and with a commitment to open dialogue to keep things together.

"Such a host of interests; such an array of prejudices; such a collection of legal and constitutional objections..."

If Jacinda Ardern in 2021 can start the "looking" by getting broad acceptance that a partnership between Maori and the Crown that best describes the platform for finding solutions and a way through the maze of convoluted history then we may very well welcome in a more just, more honourable and more inclusive New Zealand.

Anonymous said...

Free Palestine. Abolish prisons. Land back. Self-determination for all Indigenous peoples. End captialism. Dismantle white supremacy. Recognise gender is an expansive universe not a binary. Smash the patriachy.

Okay, but this is going to involve quite a lot of displaced peoples, is it not? How could it not?

Guillaume said...

Although today Maori life before the arrival of Europeans is painted as utopian, of a people at peace with themselves and nature, I am surprised to find no demands for a return to such an idyll. No signs of a willingness to relinquish the disturbing features of modern life introduced by the colonists.

No thanks either for the benefits of modern medicine, just continuous complaints of discrimination and demands for more funding for Maori. I will not list the many items and advantages brought to these islands over time by the despised colonials that lifted New Zealand into the modern world.

Rather, led and encouraged by the incomprehensible hidden policies of a democratically elected government, a plan to seize control of governance of the country by a Maori elite. A plan to foist on the 85% non-Maori a government largely based upon the culture and customs of an incoherent tribal society.

This plan is based upon the United Nations Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, to which New Zealand is a signatory. As a declaration, it is not binding on signatory nations but simply signals good intentions.

Whether or not Maori are indigenous to the islands that comprise New Zealand, they arrived a mere 400 years before the land was sighted by Abel Tasman in 1642. Indigenous or migrants? In comparison, the people present in Australia when the Europeans arrived in the 18th-century had occupied the subcontinent for an estimated 40,000 years. This is the meaning of indigenous.

Not only would the plan envisaged for New Zealand be expensive, but divisive and disruptive. One could likewise question the necessity when the country has many more serious issues that face the whole population rather than a minority.

As for the Treaty of Waitangi, its status as a treaty is questionable. In international law, a treaty must be entrained between sovereign nations.

Anonymous said...

House of Reps must go:

Listen to what they are saying. Take them at their word.

The Barron said...

'in the Orakei Report the Tribunal drew upon Lord McNair's work on The Law of Treaties ... in finding that the Treaty of Waitangi should be interpreted in the sense in which it would have been understood by the Maori signatories...
Reference to international law interpretation, including those applicable to treaties involving indigenous peoples, may be justified on several grounds,
Firstly, such principles are appropriate to the interpretation of an international treaty of cession...'
Benedict Kingsbury, The Treaty of Waitangi some international law aspects, in Waitangi Maori and Pakeha perspectives of the Treaty of Waitangi (I.H.Kawharu ed.)1989
Kingsbury goes on to analyse in relation to contra proferentem and principles of good faith.

PaulVD said...

A key feature of the Treaty is that it exists in an English version (written by Hobson following his instructions from the British Government) and a te reo version (translated the night before by Henry and Edward Williams), and that these versions are fundamentally different in the critical concepts of sovereignty/kāwanatanga and ownership/rangatiratanga. But had it been correctly translated, it could never have been signed: Hobson had no authority to sign a treaty which did not transfer sovereignty to the British Crown, and Maori chiefs could not give up their mana (which would be a consequence of ceding sovereignty). Without the mistranslation, there was no deal. So it is really beside the point to debate which version should take precedence.
And Hobson later proclaimed British sovereignty over all NZ anyway, including places where the chiefs had not signed the Treaty. This was largely to block the New Zealand Company, which was preparing to establish its own state around Wellington (something like the East India Company's state? - thanks to Hobson, we escaped having that horror in our history).
None of this matters legally: the legitimacy of the NZ Government does not come from the Treaty, but from the results of the last election. The arguments about the Treaty are a cover for an attempt to wrest power from one part of NZ society in favour of another part. As you say, this is a revolutionary attempt, disguised because its proponents would lose badly in an overt struggle.
We are in a constitutional transition, and it is hard to see what the final settlement will look like. (Of course, it can’t really be final, because societies continue to evolve. A few generations from now something different will be needed, perhaps allowing for the aspirations of our Asian fellow-citizens, who are sitting this round out.) But I do know what the settlement will be called: it will be “giving effect to the Principles of the Treaty”.

Anonymous said...

I once said to a Maori, we aren't one people but we definitely aren't two.

DS said...

It is interesting that in Scotland a similar argument exists as to whether sovereignty is maintained as the right of those that freely entered into agreement. Both Maori and the Scots have the view that as unconquered people, sovereignty has not been conceded, and the right to determine the degree of independence remains.

International Law does not recognise Unilateral Declarations of Independence.

Scotland and England agreed to a political union in 1707, and sovereignty resides in Westminster (Holyrood has delegated authority, akin to local councils in New Zealand). Breaking the Union would accordingly be a matter for the shared Parliament in Westminster, not a matter for the Scots or English to unilaterally invoke on their own accord.

(Westminster also offered Scots the opportunity for independence in 2014, which the Scots voted against).

greywarbler said...

Anonymous 14.24
I like the way you list all the main points clearly. I don't want to look at the twitter link as I'm feeling fragile at the moment. So going on what you say - I agree with your conclusion about displaced people. Worse will be the displaced minds. With no understanding of all the teeming problems, mismatches and myths swirling round us, and with elegant utopian ends in mind which are unattainable, what will people have to hold on to for direction and belief? When the going gets tough, the tough get going. And they will be tough. I don't think that people have ever faced up to the terror of World War Two. The Jews almost annihilation was a warning to the world of how we can switch from thinking and moral human beings to driven systems and goal-oriented ones, like the switch from ordinary locusts to ravening hordes of them through some trigger happening.

I looked up Michael Marien's 1970 Handy Guide to Policy Proposers which is tongue-in-cheek classify-yourself from a list of Ideological Positions. I'm around Radical Romantic - A cancered civilisation - Small experimental communities (as Proposal for Future). The new policies could becoming from Rumbling Revolutionary - Repressive, racist, capitalist establishment, with future - Confront and destroy The System (Other details worked out later). Last on the page is Apocalyptic Apostle - Armageddon coming to a sinful world - Follow us and Be Saved. Humourous, ironic, witty and wise, I think.

For serious thinking connected to Michael Marien who is a futurist - Founder, editor Future Survey and Future Survey Annual, World Future Society, Bethesda, Maryland, since 1979. Co-editor: What I Have Learned: Thinking About the Future Then and Now, 1987.
also informative stuff:

Here is one piece of a most interesting interview from 2010:
In this interview, William E. Halal PhD, Prof Emeritus, George Washington University, author, and president of, shares data and viewpoints on the "Global Megacrisis."
Why do you think Michael Marien and other skeptics think that disruptive leaps such as "The Age of Consciousness" are unrealistic, or is it that your time frame is too aggressive?

People are preoccupied with negativity and we are in a state of gridlock. The country can’t do much if it is polarized politically. But information technology is exploding and it’s changing the world dramatically. In ten years artificial intelligence is going to be good enough to automate routine human thought, and it’s going to raise awareness to the next stage of social evolution—consciousness.

Right now we focus on knowledge, but next we'll move beyond knowledge to focus on values, beliefs, and ideologies—all of the things that are major obstacles, or blockages to progress today. That’s the way evolution always moves. A new capability evolves to address the challenges that limit further progress.

greywarbler said...

Shane McDowall Thank you for your missive (missile, missal) to me. I should take up bowls should I? And what should I do - throw them at you as the enemy? With your type of superior stance bleating your thinking, violence could arise on a larger scale than is to be seen at present. I don't want to see the discourse about what Maori signed and did in 1830-1840-1850 be allowed to distract the two races from meeting, talking and doing about how we work together now and prepare for the future. So I am not taking up a Taiaha you care to present to me, it is korero that is needed in good faith from both sides, not rhetoric about legal niceties from two centuries ago.

You say: You do not know me, you do not know what I think, and you have no idea what my connections are.
But at least for over 40 years I have provided a genuine Maori voice - unfortunately for free - to the Pakeha dominated media using my real name.
People who comment in public forums using a pseudonym are moral cowards.

People who need to protect themselves against those with hardened attitudes of passive-aggression like yours are well advised to use pseudonyms. If you have been advising on Maori matters for 40 years you must be sick at heart to see how you have failed to achieve a political and civil culture that leads to all Maori being proud, skilled, satisfied people, living fulfilled lives, immersed in both Maori and Pakeha culture and society at all levels.

People who have read you will have noticed your pompous, negative attitude and consider with scepticism your opinion that I write waffle.

sumsuch said...

DS, you're coming onto my ground -- the Union was bought for. It turned out bloody great for the Scots who left (willing to exploit others) and not those who stayed. Their main economic advantage was cheap labour in the 20th century.

I want the country of my other heart to do its thing, whatever it decides.

sumsuch said...

Not sure why I'm described as 'Anonymous' in my comment 'we aren't one people but we definitely aren't two'.

sumsuch said...

Shane ... McDowall -- a good Scots Galloway name -- underdogs have disadvantages. Politicians in the old days refused, idealistically, to take payment, which kept out the poor's representatives. Exactly the same situation for commenters. The poor can be persecuted for talking truth.

I'm glad I edited out my venom.

Nick J said...

Andrew, we crossed paths, I too was at the NLP launch that night so long ago. So much water has flowed under the bridge since.

John Hurley said...

One family under The State or ethnic adversaries. As Mathew Tutaki says " we are different peoples who just happen to occupy the same place, BUT MAORI WERE FIRST HERE".

On RNZ Facebook they didn't like me saying "our ethnic adversaries" - that's not playing the game!

The Barron said...

In doing so, Westminster recognised that the right for independence was the will of the Scots. No putting that genie back in the Irn-Bru bottle.

sumsuch said...

I somehow manage to work a reference to Scots into my every comment. All down to the imaginative life of my brothers and I in the dull 70s suburbs without the stability of a solid marriage by our parents.

John Hurley said...

Christchurch is a city of "Love and Social Change". That must be a corporate definition

: unselfish loyal and benevolent (see BENEVOLENT sense 1a) concern for the good of another: such as
(1): the fatherly concern of God for humankind
(2): brotherly concern for others

What's the pay?

The other definitions involve kinship, familiarity or sex

Shane McDowall said...

Gw. You do write waffle. And you are clearly passive aggressive, that is why you use a nom de plume and make vague threats of violence.

Pale, male, and stale. Very sad.

If you do not like what I write, then don't read it. My name appears at the top so it's not hard to miss.

And if you can't take shit, don't give shit.

greywarbler said...

Sumsuch - there's a deja vu there. It used to be the dull 50's suburbs, now it seems the 70's continued that trend (tongueincheek). The 60's sexual revolution and feminists rose up at that time and stopped it being dull and achieved some things that haven't dissipated into polluted air. But now we, who haven't been made complacent and targeted on self-advancement by parents with a solid marriage, must rise above their pattern of old-age smugness and self-congratulation. Flip-flop, it's a funny old world. Will we be able to find balance and reset levels of satisfaction to include all and not just me and my shadow, before climate change forces degrade our personal comforts?

greywarbler said...

SM - good acronym. I will follow your advice. I like to converse with thoughtful even if testy people who can be tough thinkers but witty as well. You don't measure up so no loss.

sumsuch said...

Just been reading about an American Supreme Court Justice of the late 1800s who refuted segregation. Marshall was known as 'the great dissenter'. I always had a fondness (always have a fondness for dissenters) for William Colenso, from my hometown of Napier (my father owned his home as a flat), for always raising a good point at the last minute on behalf of the lesser, but right, party. I prefer, thinking about it now, achieving right.